Whether your organisation is large or small, supporting the work life balance of your employees makes good business sense. Implementing family friendly initiatives can be simple and inexpensive and result in significant benefits to your bottom line.
Can you afford not to? Lagging behind means less skilled applicants for jobs and losing current employees, especially those who become pregnant, who may decide to leave a workplace which does not offer them flexible working arrangements.
Benefits for employees
Greater ability to manage their workload and time at work
More time to provide necessary support to their family or dependents
More time to participate in the community eg. sports, hobbies and voluntary work
A more balanced and enjoyable life – increased health and productivity
Benefits for employers:
When an employee leaves, you not only lose their valuable knowledge and networks, you spend time and money on advertising, interviewing new staff, induction, training and reduced productivity during new staff hand-over.
It has been estimated that to replace an employee can cost 38 per cent of their annual salary.
Therefore to replace an employee on an annual salary of $45,000 costs you $17,000. The cost may be as much as nine months' salary for a specialist.
Absenteeism can require other staff to work overtime or paying short-term contractors and extra supervision which all reduces productivity. Flexible practices can reduce absenteeism as employees can take a few hours off to attend a child's medical appointment for example, rather than take a sick day
Reduced office-related overheads
Giving staff the ability to work from home can save office-related overheads. It is also better for the environment as there is less commuting required.
Be recognized as an employer of choice and attract skilled workers
Demographic and social changes mean more workers are looking for flexibility
More women caring for children as well as ageing parents and partners are also looking for paid work
More fathers want to have more time with their family
More older workers are looking to phase into retirement
Gen ‘X’ and ‘Y’ place greater value on work life balance
If you become known as a family friendly flexible employer you will increase the number of skilled applicants for jobs.
Increase morale, motivation and productivity
Increase loyalty, commitment and support
Increase customer satisfaction
You may have greater ability to meet the demands of clients or customers – for example, through flexible start and finish times that increase the span of hours your business operates
More relaxed staff provide better service resulting in increased customer satisfaction
Enhance your brand and reputation
Be recongnized as a ‘good corporate citizen’
Greater workforce equity and diversity
Compliance with industrial and anti-discrimination legislation
Potential for improved occupational health and safety records